Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Green Tomato and Egg Pizza
Our CSA farm has been hit pretty hard by the absolute crap weather we've had this year. His cornfield drowned, his arugula is full of holes and hold the phone: we haven't even gotten any zucchini yet. Whoa.
But that's not even the worst of it. The worst of it is the paltry selection of tomatoes. Many farmers here are harvesting the much anticipated summer super star early and green just so they can keep them from rotting on the vine. Maybe you've heard of it: the dreaded late blight attacking most of the tomatoes here in the northeast and withering the stalks, leaves and fruits into dry brown skeletons of sludge. It's really, really depressing so I'm not going to dwell on it. I'll just say hey, if you need to harvest early or you find green tomatoes at the market, don't fret! Make pizza. (Or you could fry 'em up and eat them southern style.)
Green Tomato Pizza
Serves 2 as a light dinner or one hungry person
I used stored dough from my ABin5 bucket (the olive oil/pizza dough recipe with a little whole wheat flour replacing about a cup of the all purpose). I also didn't really stretch it thin enough, but I really like doughy crust. You can use your favorite pizza dough recipe; here's a good one, and store-bought is fine, too.
Pizza dough (or a generous pound of stored dough)
1 medium green tomato per 10-inch pizza, sliced
1 egg per 10-inch pizza
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese*
2-3 cloves garlic, more if you like garlic an awful lot (I do!)
cornmeal for sprinkling, or parchment paper
Preheat your oven to its highest setting (mine is 500 but it runs at about 550 if you give it a long enough pre-heat) with a pizza stone or upside down cookie sheet on the middle rack. You'll want to give it at least 20 minutes to heat up. If using stored dough, take it out of the fridge and give it some time to rest at room temperature; you can do the rest of your prep work while it rests.
Chop the garlic roughly, then using a little bit of salt for friction, smash and mash it against the cutting board with the flat of your knife to make a rough paste. You could also use a mortar and pestle here. Put the garlic in a small bowl and add couple tablespoons of olive oil. Set aside.
Spread a thin layer of cornmeal on a pizza peel or the back of a cookie sheet (or use a sheet of parchment paper, crust will not get as crispy, but that's ok with me). Flour your hands, then pat your dough flat and stretch it into a thin round, tossing it gently on your knuckles at first then stretching more vigorously until it reaches the diameter you want. Place the round of dough on the peel, and working quickly, spread the garlicky oil over the pizza, leaving a thin border. Sprinkle the feta over the garlic oil. Add the tomato slices, forming a ring in the center. At this point, if you want a fully-set egg yolk, crack an egg into the center of the tomato ring. (If not, wait until the pizza is 3/4-cooked, then crack the egg onto the hot pie and let it finish in the oven. ) Grate some Parmesan cheese over the whole shebang, and sprinkle with some black pepper.
Slide the pizza off the peel/cookie sheet onto the stone in the oven and cook for 10-15 minutes depending on the heat of your oven. The egg will be fully set (unless you waited), the tomatoes starting to shrivel and the crust puffed and brown around the edges.
*This is not a super cheesey pizza, so feel free to increase the feta to 1/2 a cup or add a meltier cheese (monterey jack, or mozzarella perhaps) under or on top of the tomatoes.